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O'Fallon, Illinois (KSDK) - The Illinois Department of Transportation awarded nearly $20,000 in grant money to the O'Fallon Police Department to increase road safety.

The $19,305 Sustained Traffic Enforcement Program (STEP) grant will heighten police presence in hopes of decreasing traffic accidents by deterring impaired drivers and unbuckled occupants.

According to Pamela Funk, O'Fallon Assistant City Administrator, STEP focuses on specific times and dates when alcohol-involved and unbuckled traffic fatalities are at their highest. STEP campaigns will run every major holiday and is scheduled to run their first campaigns the weekends before and after Thanksgiving.

To avoid crashes or an arrest, the O'Fallon Police Department recommends following these driving guidelines:

- Designate a sober driver and give that person your keys
- If impaired, use public transit or call a sober friend.
- Promptly report impaired drivers to police
- Wear your seat belt
- Do not text and drive.

Police believe STEP and other visible enforcement programs offer the greatest potential to change public attitudes about driving, and ultimately save lives.